Home to the fifth largest South Asian population in the country according to the 2000 Census, the Washington, DC area is a hotbed of desi culture. We’ve got gurudwaras, mosques, temples and desi groceries galore. SAALT is collaborating with the Asian Pacific American Legal Resource Center (APALRC) to learn more about South Asians who live and work in the District through the South Asian Community Empowerment Project and we are looking for volunteers!
So what do volunteers do, you ask?
It’s simple, volunteers conduct street-side surveys of South Asians in Washington, DC. You’ll be collecting information that simply isn’t out there right now about the community here in DC and learning about your fellow District natives. All volunteers will be trained in surveying and community work. Want to volunteer? email Maha Khan at firstname.lastname@example.org and we hope to see you out there!
Also, we’re going to be writing more about this as it gets closer but the National South Asian Summit is happening, right here in DC, from April 24-26. This is an exciting opportunity for students, professionals, activists (really, everyone!) to make connections and strategize around empowering the South Asian community. More details to come, but we’re looking at a lot of exciting speakers and guests, so register today!
SAALT is gearing up for Be the Change 2008 and we wanted to thank all of our planning teams and local volunteers who have worked so hard over the past few months to plan for this national day of service! Be the Change, formerly known as the National Gandhi Day of Service, is coordinated by SAALT along with volunteers around the country. This year, we are excited that the event will be held in over 60 cities and campuses! You can find a full list of the cities and campuses here.This year’s theme for Be the Change is “Solidarity in Service” and we want to encourage all of our volunteers to keep this theme in mind when they are volunteering this year. This theme reflects the way community service can build coalitions, strengthen relationships, and bring about solidarity among people of different backgrounds.
Examples of service sites this year include:
Books to Prisons: Volunteers will be reading letters from prisoners, selecting books that match their request, and packaging the books to send the prisoners (Washington DC)
Hands on Atlanta Volunteers will be building wheelchair ramps, mentoring individuals in computer skills, and more. (Atlanta)
Ronald McDonald House: Volunteers will prepare a meal for, and serve families whose children are seriously ill and receiving treatment at nearby hospitals. (San Francisco)
Kids Enjoy Exercise Now (KEEN): Volunteers will be conducting recreational activities for kids in the program who have are mentally or physically challenged. (New York City)
Boston Healthcare for the Homeless: Volunteers will be
working with patients by leading activities like games, crafts, entertainment, etc.These are just a mere few service sites that Be the Change volunteers will be participating in this year. Stay tuned for an update about how Be the Change went and how you can continue your community involvement.